Communication Strategies

Communicating patiently and effectively with your FASD child can make the difference between getting out the door for school, avoiding meltdown (theirs or your own) and generally keeping the peace. Some useful phrases for your own internal dialogue include: 

“Can’t not won’t.”
Remember that FASD is caused by brain damage.

“Ten-second kids in a one-second world.
People with FASD need more time than others to process and understand.

“Gravel roads, not highways.”
Atypical neural pathways associated with FASD are easily disrupted.

“Brain, not blame.”
If you find yourself making unhelpful judgements, remember this phrase.

Adapt the environment, not the person.”
Safe, supportive environments are key for people with FASD to thrive.

“Short, simple, specific, slow.”
Effective communication is essential for people with FASD who won't get sarcasm, irony or often, jokes. Getting them to repeat instructions is also encouraged.